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Insurance Companies Use Social Media and Technology to Reject Long-Term Disability Claims

If a life-changing sickness or injury results in a long-term disability, insurance companies are expected to work with claimants to evaluate the claim in good faith. Unfortunately, many disability insurers treat their customers as ATM machines: good for taking premium money without returning the monthly disability benefits they’ve agreed to pay in a timely manner.

Social media is a large part of people’s daily habits, and some Americans post intimate details of their daily activities online. Insurance companies conduct wide-ranging investigations to hunt down potential leads into a claimants’ personal life, all in order to avoid paying their disability claim. These predatory tactics are among those many insurance companies use in order to build a case against a claimant who is seeking to make or keep a long-term disability claim going.

An easy example of how long-term disability insurance companies stalk claimants via social media would be a post from a party. Should the claimant take a selfie at a party, the insurance company might make the argument that the claimant is in good enough health to socialize, he or she is out and about and looks great in the photo, therefore denying their claim. Insurers use all manner of investigative tactics, including hiring private investigators to videotape a claimant’s activities in order to deny their long-term claim.

These situations put claimants in compromising positions where their own social media posts can be taken out of context and used to deny their legitimate monthly disability claim. Insurance companies can take advantage of these posts and pictures and make the case that the claimant is not disabled. They will make sure they find something that sticks in order to avoid paying out a valid insurance claim.

Insurance companies will even go to extremes by using drones with cameras, unsolicited information gathering (i.e. finding out if a claimant is part of a gym; plays golf; volunteers; vacations), and even phishing scams in order to gather as much negative evidence as possible to avoid paying out on a long-term disability claim. With the use of technology, many insurance companies have found innovative ways to gather information on the very people they are bound to treat in good faith.

Insurance companies will go to the point of checking Fitbits, Apple Watches, and even app usage for tracking health data to manipulate juries in a courtroom against a claimant to imply that a person who alleges disability should not be able to exercise or walk or jog regularly.

Tips For Protecting Your Disability Claim

Long-term disability insurance companies are going to look at your Twitter, Facebook, TikTok, Instagram, and any other public accounts you may have. Below are three easy steps you can take on your social media accounts to protect yourself from insurance companies’ efforts to deny your long-term disability insurance claim:

  • Research the people that follow you on social media.
  • Set your account to private so insurance companies aren’t granted public access.
  • Avoid answering direct messages from unknown accounts and report any suspicious requests to your attorney.

What can you do? 

At DarrasLaw, America’s top disability firm, we help people like you every day, nation-wide. Our founding partner, Frank N. Darras, and his firms have recovered nearly $1 billion in wrongfully denied insurance benefits worldwide. You can be confident that we can try to help you get the monthly disability insurance benefits you need. Insurance companies will do everything in their power to make thriving impossible, so it is vital to educate yourself on next steps in situations such as these. Please be mindful, your disability insurance company will scour the internet looking for each and every bit of information they can argue are activities inconsistent with what your doctor’s restrictions and limitations were. Be smart about what you post; be smarter about what your friends are posting; take down your LinkedIn account if you are disabled, or your carrier will argue you are holding yourself out to the world as capable and seeking work.

DarrasLaw is Americas' most honored and decorated disability litigation firm in the country. Mr. Darras has seen more, evaluated more, litigated more, and resolved more individual and group long term disability and long-term care cases than any other lawyer in the United States.

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